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How to identify and terminate the running processes of applications you no longer use, in Mac OS X

Monitor de Actividad: Información útil sobre lo que sucede en tu equipo

We may all be very clear about what we have running on our Macs right now. Look at the top right of the Mac OS X menu bar and you’ll see an icon for each application running in the background. However, how many of you could assure me that you don’t have any processes running on an application you no longer use ?

How to identify and terminate the running processes of applications you no longer use, in Mac OS X
How to identify and terminate the running processes of applications you no longer use, in Mac OS X

Applications use running processes that are kept in memory to facilitate access to your application on the operating system, or to perform tasks from that software, such as checking our email account from time to time, controlling a hardware device, etc..

Let’s remember how to end a process from the Activity Monitor, and in passing, we’ll use a real example of a process that many of you may have running right now and no longer use: The Logitech Control Center . If you were using a Logitech mouse and you switched to the Magic Mouse ( I know that there are many cases ), even if you have uninstalled it from the Preferences Panel… the LCC process is still there. Let’s go and get it.

Identified the process

To enter the list of running processes, we enter the “Activity Monitor” application and go through the list it shows us. Many of them won’t ring a bell, so I recommend that those of you who don’t know them for sure look at this handy list of Mac OS X system processes.

If we already know which one we want to eliminate, we select it. In our example, we select the “Logitech Control Center” and click on the “i” for Inspect at the top. A window will open where we can find the logical path of the file to be deleted ( check the capture ). Write down this path, and then click on “Exit the process”. This will not delete it permanently , only in this session.

Deleting the process file permanently

By entering the path we have obtained before, we will find exactly the process file. We can delete this file, but remember that you must first stop the process ( described in the previous step ) or the system will not let you delete it because it is running. The next time you enter your session, will not be loaded .

Obviously, many programs have uninstallers that remove these small resident processes, although it never hurts to check via the activity monitor if there is any trace of software that we do not use and that continues to consume our precious memory and CPU.

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